Education

LabJogos offers 6 courses in the Specialization on Games at Técnico Lisboa and holds several Master Thesis and research projects in the fields of Games and Interactive Experiences.

It also promotes the creation of multidisciplinary teams. To do so it has an old connection (2013) with Belas-Artes (ULisboa Art School), allowing projects with greater quality by mixing the programmers and artists from these two institutions. More recently (2019), bonds with the Bachelor’s Degree in Industrial Engineering and Management were made, allowing not only the creation of a game but also of the exploration of its impact in the market.

Courses

Artificial Intelligence in Games

Understand the differences between traditional AI and AI applied to game development, where other factors such as playability are more relevant that the oponent’s intelligence level. Be familiar with the practical problems when developing AI for video games, and with the several techniques applied in comercial video games. Know how to design and build an AI system for a video game independently of its genre (action, sport, strategy, narrative).

Autonomous Agents and Multi-Agent Systems

To acquire general notions about agents and multi-agent systems; knowing how to identify and classify agents and environments, according to different properties. Knowing how to develop complex systems and systems from different application areas, using an agent-oriented methodology. Knowing how to define a society of agents in order to solve a specific problem. Being able to design agents with reactive, deliberative and hybrid architectures. Being able to create societies of agents that communicate, in a practical way, using suitable languages and platforms.

Computer Graphics for Games

This course covers both theory and practice of game engine software development. It delves into the different engine subsystems including, but not limited to, rendering, character animation, and physics, and details the articulation required to support gameplay development. By the end of this course, students should understand how modern game engines work, and be able to design and develop their own game engines.

Game Design

This course grants the students the opportunity to develop their skills on experience design and prototyping for games. The learning process is sustained in the discussion of what is a game, what are its components and what is its relation to the players (having in mind their differences). It is expected that the student develop design documents and prototypes to support his/her work on the course.

Game Development Methodology

Present a vision of the different methodologies and technologies involved in the development of digital games discussing the main features and issues in each one. Grant students with conceptual tools and techniques to develop user interfaces for games with special emphasis on player controls. Develop the ability to reflect and test the player experience and gameplay. Discuss the role of conceptual modelling and user testing. Highlight the importance to take a user centred approach in the exploration of the player experience.

Multimedia Content Production

Know the different types of multimédia information and how to manipulate them to poduce multimedia content. To understand the technological constraints that affect Production. To understand critical factors affect the success of a production, namely in aspects such as capture, encoding, processing and visualization of the different media. To know the different kinds of available authoring tools. To create Multimedia contents; To identify the different contexts in which multimedia can be consumed, with emphasys on online and network issues (evaluate bandwidth, latency, synchronization, etc.) and mobile devices. Introduce some advanged multimedia usages such as procedural modelling, generative art augmented reality. Apply efficient methods of multimedia content retrieval.

Thesis

Expectancy and Emotions in Synthetic Characters

  • Ricardo Rodrigues
  • Carlos Martinho (Advisor)
  • 2016
  • Finished
  • believability
  • emotions
  • synthetic-characters
  • video-games
  • anticipation
  • agent-interaction

Believable interactions between synthetic characters are an important factor defining the success of a game relying on the player being able to create emotional bonds with the game characters. As important as the character being themselves believable is that the interaction with or between such characters is believable. Although research in synthetic characters has developed several models to improve character believability, interactions are generally not the focus of such works. This may be one of the reasons why state of the art models from Academia are still not being used in commercial products. In this thesis, we bridged affective computing and traditional animation principles and create a model for character interaction based on anticipation and emotion that allows for precise affective communication of intention-based behaviors. We also present a study with 52 subjects supporting that our proposal is able to increase scene believability when compared to traditional approaches.

An approach to Collaborative Storytelling

  • Guilherme António Mesquita Barbas
  • Carlos Martinho (Advisor)
  • 2011
  • Finished
  • collaboration
  • interactive-storytelling
  • rpg
  • group-authoring

Given its enormous potential Interactive Storytelling has been the subject of many academic research in recent time. The promise to create a story capable to adapt and mould itself to the person who is experiencing it has several implications specially when we are talking about the Entertainment Industry. However, this does not come freely. The creation of such stories has been a thorn on its paw since its inception. Due to this fact the lion's share of investigation has been around the authoring part of Interactive Storytelling with some results in recent times but still with a very troubled existence where only experts are capable of creating stories. The approach taken to solve this problem consists in using the power of collaboration and team work to solve the many issues identified that currently limit the Interactive Storytelling world. Since there is little to no work in the field of Group Authoring for Interactive Storytelling the work made was mainly of creation, of testing a new approach with some help from the work developed for 'normal authoring'. To demonstrate the research's results a prototype named StoryColla of an authoring collaborative system was created. A prototype that not only allows for the creation of Interactive Stories collaboratively it also does not require any type of programming expertise to be used.